The Power of Yin Yoga (& why it often makes me cry)

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*Read the full article from Elephant Journal

Yin yoga is a powerful thing, in all its quietness. We often mistake quietness and lightness with ease. But what we tend to forget is that when the body is still, when there are no distractions, the mind starts to have a fiesta of its own, which is not always comfortable.

It’s hardly ever comfortable.

The Yang energy withing starts to rise, it wants to come out and play, and unless we can delicately direct this energy down and inwards, it will take over. read more

Give yourself some space

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Every now and then Facebook reminds me of the events that happened in the past. This great function lets me know what I did exactly 2 years ago or 5 years ago. Every time I look at these photos, I cannot believe how it’s only few years ago, after all it seems like a lifetime ago.

What a great way to remind yourself how far you have come, what has changed and how in just few years from now things can look completely different again.

The concept of space

This morning, January 1st 2016, I lay in bed, drinking coffee and eating cookies. The sun was shining, the green light curtains were moving with the morning breeze, and I got to thinking about what I most wanted to give myself in 2016. The concept of space came to mind. read more

5 thoughts you should stop telling yourself

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Beliefs are thoughts that have been with us for so long that we started to believe they are true. They can be beneficial to us (“I always learn new things fast” or “Good things are coming my way“), or they can be harmful for our development (“I always fail” or “I’m always so unlucky in life“).

When we want to change our lives around and start something new, there are plenty of these critical voices around and within. Some of them may be our own, some are thoughts adopted from the society we live in, some may come as a “friendly advice” from parents and friends, and some are just things we believe because we think that is the way reality is. read more

When We Surrender to the Moment

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For the most days we have the pleasure of guiding various Wellbeing Retreats here in Camiguin, Philippines. This means starting and ending the days with yoga, and having insightful meditation and Life Coaching in between.

Like always, every retreat teaches us something, every student makes us realize something new.

Usually the one, most important lesson that keeps coming back is about letting go. Of plans, of goals, of future as we hope it would unfold. I saw what happens, when we are fully in the moment, trusting that the next breath, or the breath after that, will bring us the clue to the next move or to the next thing to say. read more

The Art of Being in the Vortex

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I recently made an important discovery about my life and the world. After a week of negative emotions, stress and feeling overwhelmed, I finally had enough. After all, didn’t I know better? This was not the way forward, and I knew only I had the answers to these seemingly big issues of mine.

The answer was, in Hicks terms, I had fallen out of the Vortex.

We’ll get to the Vortex in a minute, but my main realization was this: What if, instead of following all kinds of activities which I hope / think / suspect would bring me joy and happiness, I’d skip the middle man and go directly for the joy and happiness! What if the only goal in my life was to live with joy and bathe in happiness? read more

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About the Chakras

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If you ever feel unstable in life, it may be that one of the chakras in your body is not completely in balance. Chakras, or energy wheels, are centers of energy within the subtle body, overlaying the physical body. It is through these chakras that energy flows within our body, and to feel healthy and fit, it is good to spend some time to review how in balance each of your chakras is.

But what are Chakras exactly?

The chakras were first mentioned in the Vedas, ancient Hindu texts, and later on in the Yoga Upanishads and Yoga Sutras of Patanjali. They are centers of energy, each represented by a different color, sound and function. They vitalize the physical body, and draw in universal life force energy to keep the body in balance physically, spiritually, mentally and emotionally. read more

What meditation does to your brain

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*This article, written by Kaisa Kapanen, first appeared on Yoga Time*

What meditation does to your brain? The benefits of meditation are well known. You get calmer, you can focus better, your stress levels are reduced and you can sleep better. But the benefits of meditation do not end there. This seemingly simple exercise of closing the eyes and tuning inwards can actually make lasting physical changes in your body. Specifically, it can literally change your brain!

What is Meditation

Let’s get one thing straight first. Meditation is not about thinking about nothing, or trying to quiet the mind so that there are absolutely no thoughts. Rather, meditation is about training the mind to focus, it’s about gaining awareness about the thoughts, and creating some distance between you and your thoughts. When you can observe your thoughts, and observe the reactions you have to your thoughts, you are getting to the point. read more